Medicinal products derived from cannabis can be legally prescribed to patients in the U.K. starting in the fall, Home Secretary Sajid Javid has announced.
The government, along with the Medicines and Health products Regulatory Agency, are now working to determine what exactly a cannabis-derived medical product is so that they can be prescribed. The products will then only be prescribed by senior clinicians for “patients with an exceptional clinical need.”
Cannabis-derived medicinal products to be made available on prescription: https://t.co/lsgEyuIiai pic.twitter.com/d12DaZyyzI
The change in the law follows high-profile medical cases like Billy Caldwell, a 12-year-old boy with severe epilepsy, whose mother campaigned for him to be legally treated with cannabis oil. Her campaign was successful, and the Department of Health granted an emergency license to his doctors in Belfast allowing him to be treated with the product.
This then led to Javid announcing a government review into the use of medicinal cannabis, which culminated today in the change in official policy.
“Recent cases involving sick children made it clear to me that our position on cannabis-related medical products was not satisfactory,” Javid said in his statement. “Following advice from two sets of independent advisers, I have taken the decision to reschedule cannabis-derived medicinal products – meaning they will be available on prescription.”
So, does this mean cannabis could be be legalized in the UK full stop, like in Canada and the Netherlands?
The government has made it clear that “today’s announcement does not pave the way towards legalizing cannabis for recreational use,” and that the law and penalties for supplying and possessing the Class B drug remain intact.
From: Esquire UK
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